press release – launch

The iconic shift dress is 50 years old; submit your favourite

The shiftWorks project is a celebration of 50 years since the mainstream adoption of the shift dress in 1965. seam, a textile collective, are inviting the public to take part by sending in a photograph of their favourite shift dress and to say why it’s their favourite. Fifty of the photographs, showing the progression of the shift dress from a revolutionary garment to a mainstay of the fashionable wardrobe, will be displayed with an exhibition of nine shift dresses created by members of seam Collective.

The photo could be of a favourite shift dress, a reminder of a great day out, or maybe a favourite photo of a relative (mum, sister, aunt, etc) or friend in a shift dress. In order to participate, it is important that the sender owns the copyright for the image, or has permission from the copyright owner. All photographs will be displayed on the seam Collective website, details below, where further information about how to enter is also available.

Nine shift dresses will be created by nine emerging textile artists/designers/makers creatively exploring their craft, to showcase contemporary textile design. The shift dress will be a canvas for their ideas. seam Collective artists taking part are: Anna Glasbrook, Desiree Jeans (Goodall), Anna Gravelle, Joy Merron, Angie Parker, Linda Row, Tabitha Stewart, Penny Wheeler, and Samon Yechi. Alongside this will be a series of workshops, run in concert with the exhibition, with the aim of encouraging creativity in textiles.

shiftWorks has been awarded funding from Arts Council England, South Somerset District Council and Somerset Art Works. shiftWorks will be exhibited at:

  • Momentum Somerset Art Weeks Festival 2015, 3-18 October 2015, at Quedam Shopping Centre, Vicarage Walk, Yeovil BA20 1EX, free to attend.
  • Select Showcase, 23-25 October 2015, at Cheltenham Town Hall, Imperial Square, Cheltenham GL50 1QA, tickets available from SIT Select.
  • Further venues to be confirmed for 2016

seam is a contemporary textile collective based in and around Bath. seam currently has 12 members, 11 of whom are graduates from Bath Spa University, eight with a Masters degree in Design: Textiles and three alumni of the Craft Council’s ‘Hothouse’ programme. seam’s aims are mutual support in making sustainable textiles, working locally and bringing textiles into contemporary focus.

Contact:     Penny Wheeler – 07910 664656
Twitter:       @seam_collective, #shiftWorks